…down on the floor, scratching for more…

Title from Fistula, “Smoke Cat Hair and Toenails”, from the album Vermin Prolificus

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Manic as fuck. This has been building. It’s a frantic race to nowhere. A deranged rat on a hamster wheel. The sedatives aren’t working (“I think I can handle my sedatives, bro…” -Charlie). Cyclical thought experiments. Running through my past transgressions. Recall, revisit, rewrite, restore. This is why the lines get blurred.

Suddenly, focus. Something intense, white hot, piercing, and its all that there is. It envelopes from the inside out, wraps tentacles, consuming. It is all that there is.

It is gone. And there is nothing. Less than nothing.

Fractured psyche, rearranged. The protective cover of scar tissue. Healing. Growth. Change…

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© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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So, you’re just gonna come back around here, show your face again like nothing happened?!

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It’s been just under six months that I’ve been completely off any sort of psychiatric medication. The last set of meds I was on triggered strange and terrible bouts of manic insanity, and I wanted to get back to an unmedicated baseline to see what that felt like. At no time in the last six months have I felt any better or more stable than before, though I have had a fair share of days that were much worse: my experience with mental illness, much like my experiences as an active drug addict, is that just when you think you’ve reached your lowest point, life is about to show you just how much more fucked it can be.

For the most part, however, being completely off psychiatric medication for me does not feel all that much different from how I remember feeling while I was on psychiatric medication. Which, in my mind, confirms my suspicions that the meds I’ve been on in the past have done fuck all to address my symptoms. They seem to work for a short while, but then…

I have an appointment this week with a witch doctor or shaman of some sort to discuss the possibility of getting back on some type of psychiatric drug regimen. I will obviously be taking the doctor’s opinion and advice into consideration, but as it stands I am honestly torn about whether or not I want to start back on that shit again. The idea of finding some type of relief from some of these symptoms of insanity sounds rather fanfuckingtastic. However, with each past experience with psych drugs I grow increasingly doubtful of the effectiveness of medication at all.

Besides, I’ve grown rather fond of some of my imaginary friends. Some of them. The rest of you can fuck right off! 😉

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© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

It all works out in time (You may take my eyes, but baby I’m not blind…)

Title: Cage the Elephant, “Spiderhead” from the album Melophobia *

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Images by Christopher Ian MacFarlane

Perhaps one of the times my head explodes, these spiders will come pouring out. There will be casualties. The truly hardy ones will scatter on remaining legs to those dark corners of existence where few would think to find shelter. The ones who make it back before I finish reassembling my shattered skull will have stories weighty with wisdom they will refuse to tell. Because not everything in this life is meant to be shared.

I’m a man of my word, and that word is always regret…

…I’m trying to be the best man that I can,
Things don’t always work out in the end…

Godhunter & Amigo the Devil, “Weeping Willow” from the 7″ collaborative record The Outer Dark

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A spider lives inside my head
Who weaves a strange and wondrous web
Of silken threads and silver strings
To catch all sorts of flying things,
Like crumbs of thoughts and bits of smiles
And specks of dried-up tears,
And dust of dreams that catch and cling
For years and years and years…

Shel SilversteinEvery Thing on It

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* I absolutely ripped this device off from a fellow WordPress bleeder, the lovely and talented “Zeebam”. Her unique photography and poignantly emotive writings hit home in a certain way, like this piece here.

© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Duties of a Precarious Sentience in the Epic Uncool

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I suspect almost every day that I’m living for nothing, I get depressed and I feel self-destructive and a lot of the time I don’t like myself. What’s more, the proximity of other humans often fills me with overwhelming anxiety, but I also feel that this precarious sentience is all we’ve got and, simplistic as it may seem, it’s a person’s duty to the potentials of his own soul to make the best of it. We’re all stuck on this often miserable earth where life is essentially tragic, but there are glints of beauty and bedrock joy that come shining through from time to precious time to remind anybody who cares to see that there is something higher and larger than ourselves. And I am not talking about your putrefying gods, I am talking about a sense of wonder about life itself and the feeling that there is some redemptive factor you must at least search for until you drop dead of natural causes.

Lester BangsPsychotic Reactions and Carburetor Dung

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The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you’re uncool.

Philip Seymour Hoffman as Lester Bangs in Almost Famous

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Tormentor (I Am The Meteor Hammer)

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Title: Fister, “Flail” from the PRIMITIVE MAN/FISTER Split 12″

I’ve been reflecting lately on the pervasive idea that I don’t have anyone in my life who I trust implicitly. Obsessive ruminations feeding a chasm of paranoia. An inability to forgive, to see the other side, to let go. Precious solitude reflected in a negative. Strangers seem easier, but only objectively. There is no worry in the unknown there, because nobody actually exists to me until I have to look them in the eye. And then suddenly they are all too real, and in an instant they own a piece of me which I never knew I had, never knew enough to miss until it is ripped away. I tell myself lies like there aren’t many pieces left, in feeble attempts at self comfort, but the truth I keep buried in the back of my skull is that this will go on infinitely because two things are forever. And one of them is suffering.

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© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

joke’s on me

you’re all
in on the joke
but the only thing
i seem to find
laughable
are the reasons
i no longer believe
are good enough
to not make
this
the final punchline.

© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

A Soul Unwound (Ljudet Av Gud) A Thrum In The Deep (The Voice of God)

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Title: Full of Hell; “Thrum in the Deep”, from Full of Hell & Merzbow

…a man locked up in a shriveled and frigid selfhood, with no living currency of faith and love between him and his fellow creatures…

Dylan Walker, “Ljudet Av Gud”

Everything will be good for a time. A new job. A new person. A connection. A fleeting sense of normalcy. The illusion of purpose. Distractions. The crash is as inevitable as it is unpredictable. Violent end to a destructive ruse with no chance of self-sufficiency. A facade which cannot be maintained. Something triggers and the mask slips. And what’s underneath is a little bit less than before. Eternal rotting. Pieces torn away and dissolved. In time there will be nothing left.

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© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Just Insanity Things…

I think I might be schizophrenic. Does doubt concerning one’s own sanity itself exclude the possibility of insanity? I am definitely paranoid and delusional. As stated here before, I can identify certain things in my mind as absurd and delusional on an intellectual level, but that does not prevent me from believing these absurdities to be true, on an emotional level. It is impossible to form or maintain any sort of healthy and lasting connection with another person when the things in your mind are constantly distorting and perverting your interactions with and perceptions of everyone and everything around you. Paranoia and confusion breed frustration and I only know how to react in anger and desperation. Those closest to me suffer the brunt of my unpredictable and destructive flailing throes of madness even as I doubt the very legitimacy of their existence.  How can I make any attempts to resolve my issues when I don’t even know what’s “real”? This life is a fucking joke and I am the punchline.

I will not do what the tick tells me to…

© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

But You Can Make My Teeth Growl

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Spinning: The Melvins, “Night Goat”

I feel like my intellect is the only thing preventing me from diving headlong into insanity with utter abandon. Despite much evidence to the contrary, I am a fairly intelligent bag of meat and calcium, and my philosophical background ensures a certain level of logic and critical thinking. Thus I am able to identify and recognize much of this madness for what it is, a product of delusion and mental illness. So, on a logical level, I realize many of the things I think and feel are not “real,” in the sense that they are perpetuations of the sickness inside my mind. However, there is a very big difference between knowing something to be true on an intellectual level, and believing it to be true on an emotional, intrinsic level.

But then, another thought. Sure, I have certain manifestations of insanity that I can identify as such. But what of all the other things, the perhaps truly delusional things, that I don’t recognize for what they are, that I accept without question as “real” and “true” to my accepted understanding of “reality”?

WOAH.

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Installation by Katie Grinnan

© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

The Pills You Take To Mend Will Be the Architects of Your Destruction: A Musing on Paxil and the Struggle With Madness

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Illustration by Joel Benjamin

Someone dear to me shared this outstanding post from Vice News on the subject of psychiatric medication withdrawal. You can find the original post by following this link.

Below is one of my own rantings on the subject from recent months.

Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan

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I have been on and off various psychiatric medications for my entire adult life, mostly concurrent with a good fifteen plus years of self-medication with “illicit” drugs and alcohol. Surprise of all surprises, I am also the kind of “adult” who can never seem to get his fucking life together.  This instability accounts for my inconsistency with staying on the legal drugs — I lose a job, I lose insurance coverage, I lose my doctor, I lose my mind.  In the midst of this, I destroy everything. 

Beyond that, I have ever increasing doubts about the efficacy of psych meds at all, coupled with growing anecdotal evidence and research suggesting I’ve never been accurately diagnosed in the first place. But that is a topic for another time…

I mentioned here that, for various reasons and circumstances, I would be going off the current “wonder drug” that I’ve been pumping through…

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